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Information

Year
1977
Runtime
85 min.
Director
Chantal Akerman
Genre
Documentary
Rating *
7.6
Votes *
649
Checks
620
Favs
43
Dislikes
13
Favs/checks
6.9% (1:14)
Favs/dislikes
3:1
* View IMDb information

Top comments

  1. Shingwauk's avatar

    Shingwauk

    This audiobook came with pictures. 1 year 10 months ago
  2. Siskoid's avatar

    Siskoid

    With News from Home, Belgian director Chantal Akerman shows she can capture tedium as brilliantly in non-fiction, as she did in fiction (i.e. her masterpiece Jeanne Dielman). As her immobile camera photographs New York's streets and subways, she reads from her mother's letters (but never hers, it's a one way conversation) in a lamenting monotone that's sometimes drowned out by ambient sound. In her mother's repeated motifs, we by turns sense the reason why anyone would move away from home, and feel badly for the supportive, albeit needy parent suffering withdrawal after years of making their child their entire life. In her mundane stories about people we don't know, we see the reflection of Akerman's images, filled with anonymous New Yorkers who quizzically look at the camera, or simply ignore its presence. The biggest mystery of all is Akerman herself from whom we get no real news, her camera entirely without judgment or fathomable motive. Does she feel that she's part of this great city, or apart from it? As the movie continues, we'll have more moving shots as the camera looks out of car and train windows, perhaps informing us that she's become a part of the bustle and hustle, or perhaps she's just trying to see everything before she leaves in that final shot from the Staton Island ferry, where it's hard not to see the seagulls following as nagging avatars of her mother. I'm often reminded of Tarkovsky's very still shots in Akerman's work, in both cases forcing you to think as you process and re-process an image. Akerman's frame is always more interesting, however, perhaps because it's less philosophical and more open to interpretation. This one creeps up on you. I admit I thought the noise in the first half was giving me a headache and the experiment quickly got old. And then Akerman sticks with it even longer and your head goes many places, examining your place in the world and trying to pinpoint hers. Not experimentalism for its own sake, the experiment actually yields a powerful effect. I'm all about this. 2 years 4 months ago
  3. -1flb2-'s avatar

    -1flb2-

    It was fun for awhile, but the fun left and the mundane took over. 4 years 7 months ago
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In 5 official lists

  1. This movie ranks #71 in The Criterion Collection's Eclipse Series
    The Criterion Collection's Eclipse Series's icon

    The Criterion Collection…

    71
  2. This movie ranks #72 in Sight & Sound's The Greatest Documentaries of All Time
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    Sight & Sound's The Grea…

    72
  3. This movie ranks #74 in BFI's 100 Documentary Films
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    BFI's 100 Documentary Fi…

    74
  4. This movie ranks #95 in BBC's The 100 Greatest Films Directed by Women
    BBC's The 100 Greatest Films Directed by Women's icon

    BBC's The 100 Greatest F…

    95
  5. This movie ranks #796 in TSPDT's 1,000 Greatest Films
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    TSPDT's 1,000 Greatest F…

    796
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